Grüner Veltliner is Austria’s most widely planted white variety, occupying almost a third of the nation’s vineyards, and it’s not hard to see why – it’s a grape that succeeds in a variety of styles.
Staying with friends in Vienna in the 1980s, we would consume substantial quantities of Grüner Veltliner bought from the producer at a local market. It was simple but fresh, quaffable, and inexpensive.
Later, in 1998, I participated in a famous blind tasting in Vienna that pitted top Grüner Veltliners against some of the most prestigious wines from Burgundy. The Austrian wines triumphed and, at the least, the tasting demonstrated that these were wines to be taken very seriously.
Scroll down to see tasting notes and scores for 20 Austrian Grüner Veltliner wines
That tasting helped to establish Grüner Veltliner’s international reputation. It may not be as popular as Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc, but it has a strong following among sommeliers and a growing band of wine lovers who appreciate its versatility.